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Founder and National Director


FOUNDER AND NATIONAL DIRECTOR Thomas Gadson, Founder and National Director of Basketball Operations established Virginia Elite in 2008 with a mission to be the premier grassroots basketball program based in Northern Virginia and to be recognized as one of the top programs within the Washington, D.C. area, Maryland and Virginia (DMV).

A native of Savannah, Georgia, Coach Gadson has been involved with basketball for more than 40 years. From his youth days playing basketball and football in the YMCA and Police Athletic Leagues (PAL) youth leagues, high school and college Coach Gadson has gathered. Throughout the years Coach Gadson has cultivated relationships that has filters back to the primary mission of Virginia Elite.

Coach Gadson has coached AAU basketball for more than 20 years. The 2019-20 season will be Coach Gadson 13th consecutive season as the Head Coach for the 17U Boys Elite Under Armour (UA) Rise team. 

Founded in 2008 with the mission to establish an elite AAU-Grassroots basketball program based in the Northern Virginia area. Throughout the years the program is known for producing elite level student athletes. With over 30+ graduating students advancing to play at the collegiate level, the program has now become one of the more prominent programs within the Washington, D.C. are and has gained national recognition from the elite level collegiate programs.

Coach Gadson is a member of the Dulles-Leesburg (VA) Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. Virginia Elite is one of a few programs that has been consistent and sustained its mission over the past 13 years.


EDUCATION Coach Gadson attended Livingstone College in Salisbury, North Carolina which competes in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA).  Coach Gadson is a graduate of Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina with a Bachelor of Science and holds a Master’s in computer information systems. Additionally, Coach Gadson holds several technical and professional management certifications. As the director of Virginia Elite, he is responsible for all aspects of the program development.


Coach Gadson with David Atkins, Washington Wizard, Assistant Coach.


In 2009 Coach Gadson created the Elite Showcase Basketball Classic (ESBC) a National All-Star event that hosted some of the premier high school players in the country.  (Coach Gadson and ESBC MVP Frank Mason, Milwaukee Buck of the NBA and the University of Kansas)

Quickly the ESBC gained national attention and was recognized as one of the premier high school showcase events in the county. The list of ESBC alumni included multiple male and female Gatorade POY from across the nation, NBA Lottery selections and currently NBA and WNBA players. 


PROGRAM Virginia Elite was founded in 2008 with the mission to establish an elite AAU-Grassroots basketball program based in the Northern Virginia area. Throughout the years the program is known for producing elite level student athletes. With over 30+ graduating students advancing to play at the collegiate level, the program has now become one of the more prominent programs within the Washington, D.C. are and has gained national recognition from the elite level collegiate programs. (Coach Gadson and Jaylan Brown, Boston Celtics and NBA Lottery Selection)

Virginia Elite Grassroots Basketball

Virginia Elite serves all parts of Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland and West Virginia. The premier AAU Grassroots Basketball program in Northern Virginia. Established in 2008 Virginia Elite has maintain a level of excellence that has resulted in many players playing at the highest level of high school and collegiate basketball.

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